‘Luxembourg Guidelines’ on terminology

A step forward in the fight against sexual exploitation of children with new terminology.

Child sexual abuse material is often referred to as ‘child pornography’ or other terms, which trivialize the issue and minimize the seriousness of the abuse being depicted.

Save the Children as well as the INHOPEnetwork of hotlines have long been advocates of better and more respectful terminology and therefor supports the Luxembourg guidelines to help streamline terminology and fight online child sexual abuse and exploitation.

A Global Interagency Working Group released the ‘Terminology Guidelines for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse’ in Geneva Switzerland, taking an important step in strengthening collaboration to address sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children. The absence of common language to describe conduct amounting to sexual exploitation and sexual abuse affects and undermines global efforts to protect children. “Even where the same terms are used, there is often disagreement concerning their actual meaning, resulting in confusion and challenges for law-makers, child protection agencies, media and civil society groups,” explained Dorothy Rozga, Executive Director of ECPAT International.

The Terminology Guidelines, dubbed the ‘Luxembourg Guidelines’ after their adoption in Luxembourg earlier this year, offer guidance on how to navigate the complex lexicon of terms commonly used relating to sexual exploitation and sexual abuse of children. They aim to build consensus on key concepts in order to strengthen data collection and cooperation across agencies, sectors and countries.

Download the guidelines Terminology Guidelines for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse.